Anatol Yusef

Anatol Yusef
Born (1978-07-20) 20 July 1978
Barking, East London, UK
Education Bristol Old Vic Theatre School (2000)
Occupation Actor

Anatol Yusef (born 20 July 1978) is a British stage, film and television actor. He is best known for his work in Last Orders, at The Royal Shakespeare Company and for his portrayal of Meyer Lansky in the television series Boardwalk Empire.


Yusef was born in Barking, East London, UK, into a Turkish Cypriot family. His father emigrated from Cyprus to London at the age of 11 whilst his mother was born in London to Turkish Cypriot parents.[1][2][3]

As a teen, Yusef found early work in television shows including Jeeves and Wooster, Grange Hill, and The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. He then trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. While in school he worked on a television show, Thief Takers and was a finalist in the BBC Carleton Hobbs Radio Award.[4]

Upon graduating in 2000, Yusef was offered a role in Fred Schepisi's award-winning film Last Orders, playing the younger self of Bob Hoskins' "Ray" and working with British actors Sir Michael Caine, Dame Helen Mirren, Ray Winstone, David Hemmings, and Tom Courtenay.[5]

He became a resident company member with the Royal Shakespeare Company. In the RSC's production of King Lear, Nicholas de Jongh of the London Evening Standard claimed "Anatol Yusef's tremendous Cornwall, the best [he] [had] ever seen".[6]

In 2006, Yusef's performance as Mercutio in Bill Bryden's Romeo and Juliet at the Birmingham Rep was heralded as "sparkl[ing]"[7] and "promisingly imaginative".[8]

In 2008, Yusef appeared in the title role of a New York off-off Broadway production of Richard III, and was described by Backstage as "a superlative actor" and "magnetic".[9] Anatol has since remained in New York City. He has worked both throughout New York City, and at The Studio Theatre in Washington, D.C., his most recent production being A Movement of the Soul, playing Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, for which he learned American Sign Language.

In 2010 he was cast as Meyer Lansky in HBO's Boardwalk Empire, first appearing in Episode 7 of Season 1, "Home" and recurring throughout the remainder of the series. In an interview with The Morton Report, Yusef described Lansky as self-educated, a massively intelligent overachiever and "a ruthless, ruthless man".[10] Anatol's characterization of Mr. Lansky has been recognized in many publications, including author and critic Clive James's article on Martin Scorsese,[11] as well as Michael Noble's review of the show on Den of Geek.[12]

In 2014 he appeared in Channel 4's BAFTA-nominated Southcliffe, receiving special mention in an article by IndieWire on the best TV episodes of 2014.[13]


Year Title Role
1990 Jeeves and Wooster (Series 1 & 3) Sydney Blumenfield
1993 The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles Hubert Van Hook
1995 Grange Hill Mark
1999 Thief Takers Aziz
2000 Second Sight: Kingdom of the Blind Sandwich Shop Owner
2001 Last Orders Young Ray
2002 The Bill Rick Lesailles
2003 Ten Minutes (Short) Peter
Unconditional Love Security Guard
Trial and Retribution PC Barry Skinner
The Afternoon Play: Turkish Delight Ahmed
The Gathering The Gathering
2006 The Bill Kevin Mann
O Jerusalem Major Tell
2009 The Reward (Short) Felix
2010 Boardwalk Empire (Season One) Meyer Lansky
2011 Corner Shop (Short) Danny
Boardwalk Empire (Season Two) Meyer Lansky
2012 Boardwalk Empire (Season Three) Meyer Lansky
2013 Boardwalk Empire (Season Four) Meyer Lansky
Southcliffe (TV mini-series) Paul Gould
2014 Boardwalk Empire (Season Five) Meyer Lansky
2016 Bastille Day Tom Luddy
You Can't Win Dirty Dick
Preacher (Season One) Deblanc


Year Title Role
2000 The Mysteries Herod/Cain
Under Milk Wood Rev. Eli Jenkins/ Dai Bread
After Miss Julie John
2002 Blackbird Sarhad
2004 Best of Motives Ahmed
2005 King Lear Duke of Cornwall
Romeo and Juliet Sampson
Macbeth Banquo
2006 Romeo and Juliet Mercutio
2007 Startled Response Umut
2008 Richard III Richard III
2009 Moonlight Jake
2010 The Science of Guilt Kevin
2011 A Movement of The Soul Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet
2012 Massacre (Sing to Your Children) Joe


  1. DigiTurk. "Boardwalk Empire'da Türk ışığı". Retrieved 2012-01-15.
  2. The Morton Report. "He's Not a Gangster, He Just Plays One on TV: An Interview with Boardwalk Empire's Anatol Yusef". Retrieved 2011-10-01.
  3. Hurriyet. "Londralı Türk Hollywood yolunda". Retrieved 2011-10-10.
  4. "Bristol Old Vic Theatre School Graduates". Winterbourne.
  5. "Last Orders Cast". IMDB.
  6. de Jongh, Nicholas. "King Lear". Evening Standard. Retrieved 1 July 2004.
  7. Uusitalo, Irja. "Romeo and Juliet". The Stage. Retrieved 6 October 2005.
  8. Dunnett, Roderic. "Romeo and Juliet, Repertory Theatre, Birmingham". The Independent.
  9. Cohen, Ron. "Richard III". Backstage. Retrieved 6 October 2008.
  10. The Morton Report. "He's Not a Gangster, He Just Plays One on TV: An Interview with Boardwalk Empire's Anatol Yusef". Retrieved 2011-10-01.
  11. James, Clive. "Martin Scorsese: American god". Prospect Magazine. Retrieved 2014-12-17.
  12. Noble, Michael. "Boardwalk Empire season 4 episode 4 review: All In". Den of Geek. Retrieved 2014-12-17.
  13. The Playlist Staff. "The 15 Best TV Episodes Of 2014". IndieWire. Retrieved 2016-08-17.

External links

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